The Islam marriage is seen as a religious obligation where the couple signs a contact with Allah. This in fact is the only requirement in a Muslim wedding. In fact, different traditions, sects and cultures all have their own way of celebrating a Muslim wedding, with the constant factor being the signing of the contract.
Muslim marriages are generally not held in mosques and men and women tend to be segregated both during the ceremony and the reception. The wedding can be officiated by any Muslim who has knowledge of the Islamic tradition. Couples opting to get married in a Mosque can make use of the marriage officers that are generally called qazi or madhun to officiate their wedding. In Malta, there are two Mosques: the Malta Islamic Centre that’s in Corradino Road, Paola and the Al Faten Mosque in Floriana.
The contract signed upon marriage includes a formal statement which specifies the amount of money that the groom will give to the bride. This statement is called the Meher. The gift is generally split in two, one before the marriage, which in today’s times, many have been opting for the wedding ring and the second part of the gift could be slowly handed to the bride in the course of the married life. The bride can choose what to do with the gift as it symbolises the her security and freedom in marriage. This part of the gift can be from a small sum of money to land or education.
The ceremony where the contract is signed is called the Nikah. here the groom, or someone representing him, proposes to the bride in the presence of two witnesses. The proposal includes the details of the Meher. Following, the bride and groom repeat the word ‘qabul’, which means ‘I Accept’, three times and sign the contract. This is then followed by the newly weds sharing a piece of sweet fruit. When the ceremony involves the segregation of the sexes, the Wali generally acts in the woman’s behalf while performing the nikah.
The Nikah could be followed by a religious ceremony where the first chapter of the Quran is read out and blessing is given.
One rpevailing tradition is that of the Mehndi, or Henna. Mehndi is the skin decoration generally applied to the bride’s hands and feet. The same art is applied to all other women in both the bride and the groom’s families. The skin decoration is a celebration within itself and it includes music and women wearing traditional lenghas.
Another tradition is that of the Barat. The Barat is celebration of the groom’s arrival at the bride’s home. The groom tends to be riding on a decorated white horse and is accompanied by music and dancing. He then is welcomed by the bride’s family by being given a floral garland and sweets.
Generally hosted by the groom’s parents, the Valima is the reception that follows the Nikah. As a tradition, the Valima generally takes place the night following the wedding, however many do opt to celebrate this immediately after the Nikah.
Bridal Cars are essential for a wedding both for transportation and also they look beautiful in wedding photos. The couples have to choose their cars not only based on the aesthetics but also according to the season and how many bridesmaids are going to be traveling in it.
Many tend to opt for limousines or Hummer limousines as it would hold a lot of bridesmaids, especially if the couple decide to have a big wedding. A Rolls Royce will then be the classier option bot for couples opting for a luxury wedding as well as for the photos. If the wedding is held in winter, one might consider to have a covered car rather than a convertible. This would rest one head and not risk being caught in the rain. A convertible would be much ideal during the spring/summer period.
One advice for soon-to-be weds is that of collecting as many quotations as possible and visit the premises to view the cars before taking a decision. There are so many options and varieties to choose from and if they have a tight budgetyou don’t need to worry. There are various places that offer very convenient packages that they would afford.
By Kristina Saliba
One of the biggest advantages of organising a themed wedding is the opportunity for a couple to have an original and personalised wedding. Themed weddings have a topic or colour around which a wedding is planned and more importantly styled. The themes are various, with this year’s most famous themes being garden, vintage, crystals, tropical, fairytale, boho-chic and the modern & industrial vibes.
When coming to plan a themed wedding, the planning is almost the same as that of a traditional wedding, but here you need to book and buy everything related to the set theme, whether the glasses to be used or the style of the cake and venue, etc. Of course if you want to be subtle about the theme, you do not need to book everything in relation to it but you can hint it by simply adding touches here and there. At the end of the day, a themed wedding is in reality a totally different experience for each couple.
Some of the Pros:
- It’s a fun and creative experience
It allows the couple to be creative, and gives them leeway to fully let their personalities shine.
- A memorable experience for your guests
A themed wedding will offer your guests a unique experience that they will surely remember for many years to come. It also gives your guests the opportunity to feel involved.
- It may result to be less costly than a traditional wedding
Some themes may involve a lot of D.I.Y. decorations and also the opportunity to wear clothes that you’ve previously bought.
Some of the Cons:
- At times it may prove to be expensive
If you are working on a tight budget, especially if the chosen theme requires the couple to buy a lot of extravagant decorations. This especially when the couple goes all out with the theme.
- Some guests might not want to cooperate
Especially when opting for a demanding theme such as requesting your guests to come wearing a costume, some might feel uncomfortable or decide not to attend the wedding due to the theme.
By Nicole Borg
Starting the weekend after Easter, the peak season for weddings is seen by many as the most ideal time period for their special day. The peak season reaches its high in May, June and the beginning of July. September is also a popular month, and October brings the peak season to a close.
But exactly why are these months so popular? Apart from guaranteeing the couple a sunny wedding, it also brings to the table a multitude of wedding themes like an outdoor wedding with a night of fireworks, beach weddings, pool and garden weddings as well as boat weddings. Moreover, the spring/summer season provides the benefit of fresh fruit and vegetables for all the health conscious couples. Last but most definitely not least, the colours of the season derived from nature with flowers for spring and lemons for summer. Additionally it’s the perfect season for a bright colour wedding.
Being the most popular season for weddings, the couple needs to be on top of all bookings and they need to be finalised with ample time in advance. Booking at least two years in advance is necessary when the wedding is on a Saturday or eve of a Public Holiday. Having a contingency plan for your wedding venue is always an important thing to reduce stress in case the weather does not cooperate, especially if the venue chosen does not offer both an indoor and outdoor area.
The same reasoning applies for suppliers. Wedding vendors and service providers are all maxed out during peak season. The couple needs to book the suppliers well in advance, especially when they have specific requests of what they want.
Expectedly, peak season offers higher prices, and its exactly the season to avoid if you’re either running a wedding on a limited budget, or you want to go against the norm.
By Nicole Borg